I looked when He broke the sixth seal, and there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth made of hair, and the whole moon became like blood;
 and the stars of the sky fell to the earth, as a fig tree casts its unripe figs when shaken by a great wind.
 The sky was split apart like a scroll when it is rolled up, and every mountain and island were moved out of their places.
 Then the kings of the earth and the great men and the commanders and the rich and the strong and every slave and free man hid themselves in the caves and among the rocks of the mountains;
 and they said to the mountains and to the rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the presence of Him who sits on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb;
 for the great day of their wrath has come, and who is able to stand?”
Dear brothers and sisters in Christ.
This is the 43rd Lecture on Revelation.
I told you that the Book of Revelation, from Chapter 6, records the things that will take place when the 7 Year Great Tribulation begins.
Big and small wars and conflicts between nations and races will break out, and there will be world-threatening natural disasters and killing-inflation.
But these calamities don’t take place by accident.
Under the supervision of God who governs the whole universe, when the Lamb, our Lord breaks the seals one by one, these calamities will take place according to book which records all the things that will take place in the end time of the world.
However, it is not that the things of the second seal take place after the first seal things, and then the things of the third seal step by step, one piece at a time.
More than two things may take place at the same time, and the thing of one seal will affect the things of other seals.
In tonight’s scripture, a great earthquake and the things that happen to the sun, the moon, and the stars are actually the results of the calamities that have been accumulated from the beginning of the 7 Year Great Tribulation.
The more wars and disasters, the more seriously the natural environment is polluted and destroyed.
Due to destruction and pollution of the nature, unusual climate changes are already common world wide today, and many scientists give warnings about it.
One example is a global warming. It is a phenomenon of a sustained increase in the average temperature of the earth.
If the temperature of the earth increases, many problems can occur.
It not only destructs ecosystems, but also has bad effects on human body so that it can cause an increase in the incidence of various diseases such as skin cancer.
As icebergs melt down, the sea level goes up. Many low-lying areas and islands sink under the water, and the residential areas of mankind become smaller to that extent.
Summer becomes unusually longer, and an extreme heat, a heavy snow fall, and a huge typhoon follow.
Since this phenomenon appears in many places of the earth already, people are desperate for a countermeasure against it, but they haven’t found a clear solution, yet.
And thus, even some people of the world give a warning that the earth will be destroyed because of this.
These phenomena will become reality during the 7 Year Great Tribulation.
The verses 12-14 write, ” I looked when He broke the sixth seal, and there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth made of hair, and the whole moon became like blood; and the stars of the sky fell to the earth, as a fig tree casts its unripe figs when shaken by a great wind. The sky was split apart like a scroll when it is rolled up, and every mountain and island were moved out of their places.”
As the wars and disasters repeat during the 7 Year Great Tribulation, the environment of the earth will be devastated, and a vicious cycle of disaster after disaster will repeat.
One of them is the great earthquake written in tonight’s scripture.
Those who are living in an area where there is few earthquake may have hard time to understand it, but the damage of a great earthquake is beyond your imagination.
For example, the 1556 Shaanxi earthquake is the deadliest earthquake which killed approximately 830,000 which includes the number of the dead due to epidemic diseases after the earthquake.
Also, the 1985 Mexico City earthquake destroyed about 250 buildings in downtown in just 4 minutes, and left about 20,000 killed and injured.
Once an earthquake like these hits a city, the thriving city is instantly devastated with a miserable scene of screaming and lamenting.
Such deadly earthquakes did exist before, but the great earthquake in tonight’s scripture is much more terrible earthquake than ever.
This earthquake is so terrible that it affects not only the areas where earthquakes are frequent but also the areas where there is even a little of possibility of earthquake.
An earthquake itself causes a great number of casualties, but there are other loses as well.
Fires break out in many places at the same time, and increase the number of the dead and injured.
An earthquake breaks dikes and causes a flood, and a tidal wave driven by an earthquake in a sea brings serious damages especially to coast areas.
This tidal wave driven by an earthquake is also a ‘tsunami.’ This tsunami causes incredible damages to cities or harbors in a coast area.
Leaving no time to escape, it brings a series of waves as huge as a house, and devastates buildings and people.
The 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake triggered a series of devastating tsunami near Sumatra, Indonesia, killed more than 400,000 (* including about 14,000 missing).
In addition, when an earthquake breaks out, due to its displacement of the ground, a large-scale volcano may also erupt.
And thus, there comes a calamity of great earthquakes and volcanoes as if the whole world were shaken.
When there is such a great earthquake and volcano eruption, a terrain also changes greatly.
An existing mountain may disappear, or new lakes or islands may come to an existence.
The ground may sink or rise. Meanwhile many things are entangled and buried under the ground so that its original look may disappear.
For this, the verse 14 says, “every mountain and island were moved out of their places.”
The verse 12 says, “sackcloth made of hair.” This sackcloth refers to cloth that is made of black hair.
It says, “the sun became black as sackcloth made of hair, and the whole moon became like blood,” and it is referring to a situation where the atmosphere is severely polluted.
Usually, the moon has a color of white or bluish white. But when there is a forest fire or a great volcano eruption, or when the atmosphere is seriously polluted, chances are that the moon looks red.
At the same time, people cannot see the light of the sun properly.
You may have seen it for yourself, or you may have heard news about it.
As the air pollution becomes more and more serious, this phenomenon is occurring more frequently.
Likewise, during the 7 Year Great Tribulation, there will be fires everywhere due to wars or earthquakes, and explosive volcano eruptions generate great ash. The whole world will be wrapped in flames and the sky will be covered with ash and polluted materials.
As a result, the atmosphere will be seriously polluted, and thus the sun will become black, and the moon like blood.
There are real examples in history. I’d like to introduce the damage of Krakatau volcano eruption, which is by far the most violent volcano explosion.
A series of explosive volcano eruption of Krakatau island of Indonesia was equivalent to 200 megaton’s of TNT.
Originally the island had an area of 47 square kilometers (approx. 29 sq. miles). But the eruption destroyed two thirds of the island of Krakatau.
Underneath the sea, the eruption left a huge hole, 300 meters deep, and 10 kilometers wide.
All the glasses of buildings within a 150 kilometer radius were broken. All the villages and ships within a 500 kilometer radius were struck by fire from the sky.
Red-hot burning rocks and a rain of hot ash fell down from the dark sky.
The darkness lasted for 48 hours that people didn’t know whether it was day or night. Due to the ash in the atmosphere, the sky was red as it were on fire at dawn and sunset.
The ash reached an altitude of 40 kilometers, and stayed in the atmosphere for a year. It blocked the sun, and cause the average global temperature fall down.
More than 300 villages in Indonesia were burnt to the ground, and the official death toll was over 36,000.
About 6,000 ships wrecked.
The Tsunami generated huge tidal waves as tall as 30 meters, and it reached not only the coast of nearby Java, Borneo, and Sumatra but also even Australia, India, and Japan.
In Calcutta River, which located 3,000 kilometers away from the volcano, about 300 ships wrecked, and the following day of the eruption, the tidal waves reached the English Channel, which is 18,000 kilometers away.
The Krakatau island was a dormant volcano, which was inactive for a long time, but it erupted suddenly.
Dear brothers and sisters.
Can you actually feel even a little bit what volcano eruption is?
I read this article so that you can feel and imagine the terrible sight of the 7 Year Great Tribulation even a little.
I introduced this article so that you can feel a miserable situation of the 7 Year Great Tribulation none of you should experience, and that you can adorn yourself as a bride of the Lord.
As you may know, the whole city of Pompeii was also completely destroyed by a volcano eruption.
It is said that there are about 800 active volcanoes in the world.
When a city is caught in such a miserable sight, many countries in the world send rescue parties, and help it with relief goods. But the damage cannot be easily recovered.
Moreover, if this kind of volcano eruption and a great earthquake take place in many places of the earth at the same time, what a miserable situation will it be?
Without having room for helping other countries, each country will hold back an urge to have the confronting disasters in hand.
Now, the verse 13 says, “the stars of the sky fell to the earth, as a fig tree casts its unripe figs when shaken by a great wind,” but it doesn’t mean the stars of the sky will actually fall to the earth.
If an asteroid collides with the earth, it will be the end of the earth.
Therefore, this verse doesn’t mean the actual stars will fall to the earth, but it describes various disasters that will happen in the sky due to earthquakes, volcano eruptions, and wars.
In other words, it refers to disasters that a plane may fall down to the ground due to an unusual change in the weather, missiles may be fired or shot down, or satellites in the orbit may fall down.
Meteorites may also fall down from the sky.
And these situations result in countless people killed.
By the way, there is a spiritual meaning when figs of a fig tree are used to speak these situations figuratively.
Matthew 24:32 says, “Now learn the parable from the fig tree: when its branch has already become tender and puts forth its leaves, you know that summer is near.” The fig tree refers to Israel.
While the disasters of the 7 Year Great Tribulation are explained, tonight’s scripture mentions a fig tree. This, too, implies what will happen to Israel.
Israel will be severely damaged during the wars of the 7 Year Great Tribulation.
They have a pride of being God-chosen people, and they have won victories in a series of wars. That’s why they have stubbornness not to give in to anyone.
However, due to endless series of wars, too many people will die and the country will be devastated. In the end, Israel will accept the arbitration of EU.
From the fact that such a pride-packed people of Israel will accept the help of EU, it is easy to guess how terrible the casualties and economic loss from the wars will be.
The scripture implies that Israel will experience countless casualties and serious economic loss just as ‘a fig tree casts its unripe figs when shaken by a great wind.’
Now, the verse 14 says, “The sky was split apart like a scroll when it is rolled up.” It means that the laws upon which the earth operates will all be mixed up and confused.
There are four seasons in the earth. Each country and each area has its own characteristics in the weather.
Summer comes after spring, and soon autumn and winter also follow.
Each area has respective average temperatures in summer and winter.
According to the laws of nature, some months of rainy season comes after some months of dry season. Each area has different annual rainfall. Different flowers come out in different seasons, and different birds visit in different season.
However, during the 7 Year Great Tribulation, great earthquakes volcano eruptions and wars continue to break out, and these put the laws of nature in confusion.
The climate changes greatly so that there is no distinction between seasons. Since it’s not hot when it’s supposed to be hot, and it’s not cold when it’s supposed to be cold, many unusual things happen in an ecosystem.
Heavy rain causes frequent floods even when rain is not expected, or lands become desert because there is no rain.
Beautiful and rich sceneries of nature are destroyed, and harvest of various grains, fruits, and fish drastically decreases.
As temperature of the sea rises up, strange things take place in an ocean ecosystem. Floods, tidal waves, and drought occur unexpectedly.
Since everything changes so greatly that it’s hard to recognize the original look of the earth, the scripture describes it that ‘the sky was split apart like a scroll when it is rolled up.’
When the laws of nature are in disorder, not only natural disasters will take place, but also various diseases will be rampant.
Where many people are killed in a war or a natural disaster, an epidemic can prevail quickly.
And here and there will appear new diseases which will be generated from environment pollution.
You may think, “Will a man truly be able to survive in an environment which is severely destroyed?”
Of course, it will be tough to manage a life in that environment, and many people will surely die. Despite this fact though, mankind will remain in existence.
It’s possible because all the calamities are allowed only in a limit that God has set.
For instance, even if an earthquake is so great that the whole earth is shook, there are areas that suffer comparatively less damage.
When a volcano erupts and the atmosphere is polluted, there are areas where its damages are so severe. But there are also other areas where the damages are relatively small.
In addition, there are also countries that have preventive measure against such disasters.
For example, they construct a building which is earthquake-proof, or they build a bombproof shelter.
Even if there is a typhoon, the scope of its damage is different between places that are well-equipped with prevention system and that are not.
If an area is always well-prepared for a disaster, the damage can be somewhat decreased. For a place where there is no pre-plan, the damage will be beyond imagination.
In tonight’s scripture, verse 15 says, “Then the kings of the earth and the great men and the commanders and the rich and the strong and every slave and free man hid themselves in the caves and among the rocks of the mountains.”
‘Hiding themselves in the caves and among the rocks of the mountains’ means that people hide themselves in a shelter when there is a disaster.
Even today, among rich people, some prepare safety facilities in their houses for the worst.
To help you understand it better, I’ll shortly introduce an article regarding an apartment.
There is a nuclear bomb-proof facility on the 4th basement of this apartment. Its gate is double plastered with shell concrete. It can resist against 300 tons from a meter high.
Its bomb-proof wall is 80 centimeters thick, which is 4 times thicker than ordinary walls (usually 18 centimeters). It’s designed to resist against heat and pressure of nuclear blast.
Inside two bomb-proof gates, there is a bunker where people can be protected from radioactive contamination.
This bunker is an area of 132 sq. meters. There are 20 3-story-camp-beds, 3 baths, a food storehouse, and a manual electricity generator.
In order to filter radioactive contaminated materials and fallout, gas filters and air-circulation systems are installed on many walls; it’s as effective as a whole building’s wearing a gas mask.
50 residents of the apartment can live for a month escaping from nuclear explosives. Since the life span of the air filter is more than 5 years, it’s said that they san live longer as long as foods are supplied.
This apartment is also designed to resist against a strong earthquake which has Richter Magnitude of more than 7.
Since the 1923 Great Kanto earthquake, which brought the worst damage to Japan, had Richter Magnitude of 7, you can easily guess how strong earthquake this apartment is built to resist.
Dear brothers and sisters.
Even in Korea, which is relatively stable country, there are people who have this preparation made already. What will people do when they see wars and disasters break out frequently during the 7 Year Great Tribulation?
The rich people with authority will build much stronger shelters and hide themselves in them.
But those shelters cannot protect the people from the calamity completely.
Of course, they will have much higher probability of survival than those who are not prepared at all.
But, no matter how deep they hide themselves under the ground, how uneasy will their life be in such terrible disasters while you don’t even know when they will end?
The verses 16 & 17 describe their anxious mind well.
It says, “they said to the mountains and to the rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the presence of Him who sits on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb; for the great day of their wrath has come, and who is able to stand?””
Out of fear, they want either the mountains or the rocks to cover them and hide them.
And they say that the disasters they are suffering from are due to the wrath of God who sits on the throne and the Lamb, our Lord.
Actually it is mankind itself that destroyed the environment and caused wars, and that bring calamity upon itself. But they say that the calamity is the wrath of God.
However, they don’t say like this only because they believe God.
Even the unbelievers of the world often say that a god gets into a rage when they face a great calamity.
Likewise, they say this way not because they repent of their evil or because they ask God for help, but they say as a habit.
Dear brothers and sisters.
Even though the calamities that I’m explaining are so huge and terrible, but they are not always in action during the 7 Year Great Tribulation.
The degree of strength repeatedly becomes stronger and weaker.
When the intensity of the calamity is severe, people will fear and cower. But when the degree if the strength becomes weak, they forget the fear, and begin to seek for their interest again.
That’s why many people in the world don’t repent until the 7 Year Great Tribulation is over. Some of them may survive and meet New Millennium Kingdom, but many people will die during the 7 Year Great Tribulation.
Dear brothers and sisters.
In the Lecture on Revelation, I quote many instances of inflation, or calamity such as wars, volcano eruptions, and earthquakes from history.
The fact is that these will happen in much greater scale during the 7 Year Great Tribulation. Even worse, these disasters will occur at the same time.
Now, what is the way to escape from such a terrible calamity that will occur in this earth?
You don’t think of build a bomb-proof shelter under the ground and hide yourself there, do you?
Before these disasters come upon, all of us must be caught up into the air and participate in the wedding banquet with the Lord, our bridegroom.
You must share the gospel with your relatives, loved ones, and other acquaintances so that they, too, can be there with you together.
You must spread the gospel to souls who don’t know about the Lord yet in the world.
If your family is sleeping in a house that is on fire, you will never have room to think this and that.
You will cry out and even break the door to wake up sleeping family, won’t you?
Likewise, by all means you must wake up the souls that may fall down to miserable calamity while in spiritual sleep.
May all the brothers and sisters finish adorning yourself as a bride of the Lord quickly so that you can enter the Happy 7 Year Wedding Banquet with the countless souls that you’ve evangelized when the Lord comes back to take us, in the name of the Lord, Jesus Christ, I pray!